Data Agents as First Points of Contact

Illustration with the text Marketing Data Services to Researchers and Good Practices

In the new part of the “Good Practices” series created by the Marketing Data Services to Researchers working group, Eeva Savolainen introduces data agents.

Data agents are researchers who also work as research data management specialists in their departments. They offer an easily accessible first point of contact for a researcher looking for help with research data management.

The data agents hold weekly open office hours in Zoom, a low-threshold opportunity for consultation without registration or booking an appointment. One or more data agents are present to answer questions or point the researchers to other experts. There are also research software engineers present. It is possible to divide participants in break-out rooms to handle more specific questions.

The practice is suitable for large as well as small organizations, and it requires at least one person who can commit to a regular weekly office hour. The aim is to provide a low threshold forum for researchers to come and ask about research data management. The target group is especially doctoral students and researchers.

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Online, not tied to a specific place.

An informal, low threshold forum, easy to ask questions.

Fixed schedule.

The expert present on a given week might not be
an expert in the same field as the researcher asking the question.




Textti: Eeva Savolainen, Aalto University
Image: Unsplash/Tamanna Rumvee (adapted)

Previously in this series:

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